1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    Suspiciously inexpensive Motobecanes - Poor quality or good buy?

    I was looking through Ebay and found a seller who carries deeply discounted, new bikes, primarily Motobecanes. Its a top-rated, reputable seller but I'm wondering about the quality of the product. First off, is Motobecane a quality brand?

    Right now, I'm a new rider looking to get more into biking and to replace my old 90's rigid-frame Fuji. I know I will not be getting anything top of the line within my budget, but I do want something quality. I know some of the components on these would need upgrading as I progress but overall would any of these be good entry level bikes?

    2010 Motobecane 600 HT

    I've been told the Dart One is not the greatest fork, but from what I've seen, it's about the best I can get in this price range and better than some of the other entry-level forks. It can always be upgraded. The Shimano components and disc brakes look good to me.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-2010-ALUMINU...item563b2c69f5
    http://www.motobecane.com/400_700ht/6ht.html

    2010 Motobecane 600 DS

    Not real sure about this one since its a FS. Obviously a lower end FS, but would it be worth the extra money or is it just not a good bike?

    http://www.motobecane.com/400_700ds/6ds.html
    http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-ALUMINUM-DUA...item230674055c

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Moto's are solid bikes.
    Motobecane, Windsor, Dawes and a couple of others are ancient old school brands from UK, France and the States(I think). The original companies went under and a firm called bikesdirect based out of TX brought over the rights to their names.

    They make decent if not great bikes. They are always great value for the prices they sell for.
    I personally own a Windsor Cliff 4700.

    What I don't like about them, the habit of advertising something as being 60-70% off of MSRP. These bikes are sold online through a couple of sellers on ebay & through their own website www.bikesdirect.com
    These bikes are NEVER sold at anything close to MSRP. Which makes the whole discount thing sound very shady.

    They offer very decent builds for the price and these prices are still low when compared to other name brand bikes with similar components. The frames are manufactured by Kinesis (atleast the windsor I own is such) and are pretty damn good.

    Bikesdirect has received a bit of flak here on MTBR for their customer service efforts or the lack thereof.

    If you are handy with a wrench and don't mind some elbow grease, do go ahead and get a bike from them. You will not find a better deal for a new bike.

    About the ebay sellers, I'm not sure about sprtymama, but I got my Windsor from chicabike. There is 0 difference in bikesdirect.com & ebay seller pricing. The clincher for buying on ebay is that you can save 8% through Bing Cashback.

  3. #3
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    That helps alot, thanks. I need to do some more research myself I guess but that clears some things up. They look like they would deifinitley fit my needs but the whole discount thing and the fact that I didn't recognize the brand was concerning. Speaking of which, if these bikes are rarely or never sold at MSRP, what makes them so much less expensive compared to the bigger named brands? It seems to me they'd have to cut costs somewhere, or are they just trying to under cut the competition?

    Also, anybody thoughts on the FS? To be honest, I know very little about rear suspensions. Just by looking at it though, I can tell these lower end models are constructed different than the higher end ones which makes me question the quality.

    I guess what it really all comes down to is which of these routes I should go with:
    -An affordable Bikesdirect hardtail with money to spare for potential upgrades
    -A hardtail from a reliable, big-name brand that may push my budget
    -Motobecane/Bikesdirect brand lower-end FS

    Like I said, not real sure about any FS that is that inexpensive, so I need some more info on that.

    Thanks!

  4. #4
    Pimpmobile
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    They can sell bikes at the prices they do because they have very low overhead... no expensive showroom to maintain, no expensive ad campaign, and what gets the most negative flak, no bank of phones and customer service personnel. The MSRP is just a figure derived at by calculating wholesale cost plus all the above costs, then adding dealer profit.... That's where the big names get the high price tags. Trek, Giant, Fuji, etc... Manufacturing costs are no higher for the big name than a BD bike.


    I have two bikes from them.. A Windsor road bike from chicabike on ebay, and a Motobecane Fantom 29Pro from bikesdirect. As was said.. if you don't mind turning a wrench, and are familiar with basic bike maintenance and adjustment, they are a great value

  5. #5
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    I have a motobecane and love mine. Their customer service is great too. There's a moto forum on here if you want to check that out.

  6. #6
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    I have a Windsor road bike, the Wellington 3.0 and it has been good so far. Had my derailleur hanger bite the dust about a month or so after purchase, which is no big deal since the replacements are better than the original. I am happy with my purchase. I would go with the 600HT, the FS is a old design. You should also consider this http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/..._cliff4900.htm, slightly better than the 600HT, same price. If you are willing to go to 500, than this would be my pick http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...700HT_2010.htm
    Big Foot Blue KHS XC704r

  7. #7
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    While probably considered a mid-tier MotoB, I recall riding the Phantom Ti a few years back, really a nice bike for the price! Here's the review link:
    http://www.mountainbiketales.com/rev...otophantom.htm
    Ever been to Mountain Bike Tales Digital Magazine? Now if only the print rags would catch on!

  8. #8
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    they're not really that cheap. the price is fairly inline with what you get.

    except that ti bike. thats a freakin steal.

  9. #9
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    Sportymama and Chickabike are related to the owner. I think one of them is Mike's wife.

  10. #10
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    It's definitely low-end as far as FS goes (with the Tektro I/O brakes and that Y-design single pivot frame) but at least it has a lockout for the rear shock/spring.

    But that brings another question, are you really going to use the FS?

    If you're just doing XC riding you don't really need it. Do you have any good downhill trails close enough to you that you'll actually hit them more than once in a blue moon?

  11. #11
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    i just put mine together this past friday, its totally legit, and it went together very smoothly.

  12. #12
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    Thanks for all the input. This clears up a lot of my concerns. I still need to look into these some more, but I have found a couple options from these brands. I think I'll forget about the FS's they offer though. I think a nicer hardtail would be better for me than a low-end FS.

    That being said, I thought a 29er might be nice.
    I saw this one from BD: http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...liff29comp.htm
    From what I hear, Widsor is comparable to the other brands. The components look good to me, including the Dart 3, but let me know if I'm missing something. Are the included pedals an upgrade from 'standard' pedals I see on most bikes? I don't know if the straps and all are benificial or what.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aharvey
    Thanks for all the input. This clears up a lot of my concerns. I still need to look into these some more, but I have found a couple options from these brands. I think I'll forget about the FS's they offer though. I think a nicer hardtail would be better for me than a low-end FS.

    That being said, I thought a 29er might be nice.
    I saw this one from BD: http://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...liff29comp.htm
    From what I hear, Widsor is comparable to the other brands. The components look good to me, including the Dart 3, but let me know if I'm missing something. Are the included pedals an upgrade from 'standard' pedals I see on most bikes? I don't know if the straps and all are benificial or what.
    Good bike for that price I think. The pedals are just metal platforms, and they work well. I would not mount the cages those are death traps.
    Big Foot Blue KHS XC704r

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dremer03
    Good bike for that price I think. The pedals are just metal platforms, and they work well. I would not mount the cages those are death traps.


    Those "cages" are what us old timers refer to as clips , hense the term "clipless pedals" .

  15. #15
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    So they can be removed?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aharvey
    So they can be removed?

    Yes they can , once removed its a flat pedal .

  17. #17
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    Awesome thanks.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aharvey
    So they can be removed?
    Actually you dont even half to go that far, they dont come mounted at all. They are in the same package as the pedals, but shouldn't be mounted already.
    Big Foot Blue KHS XC704r

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